When adding code that affects documentation (for example, to add a new parameter), the developer adds a DocImpact flag.

Using the DocImpact flag in a commit message

In any OpenStack project, you can add a DocImpact flag in a commit message to help identify any bugs that require documentation to be written in the OpenStack manuals project.

This method offers notification and tracking of the possible impact to documentation due to the patch. If your commit has an impact on documentation, for example an added, altered, or removed command line option, a deprecated or new feature, a caveat or if you have written docs in the patch, add “DocImpact” to a line in your commit message.

This creates a Launchpad bug for the project indicated in the gerrit/projects.yaml file in the openstack/project-config repository. This does not guarantee documentation will be written, but offers visibility of the change and tracking. You can also use it as a reminder to yourself to write docs for the feature later, or remind yourself to find a writer to write for you.

If you are a doc contributor, these are the steps we take once a DocImpact notification comes to the list.

  1. Create a new doc bug in either openstack-manuals or openstack-api-site. In the bug:

    1. In the title, put newton or ocata depending on the release the patch affects.

    2. Copy and paste the link in the bug description.

    3. Describe the documentation that is affected if the code patch lands in the bug description.

    4. Keep the doc bug set to New until the code patch is merged.

  2. Continue to check on the patch and change the status to Confirmed once merged.

  3. Use the information in the Doc bug triaging guidelines section to set priority once it lands.

Writing good commit messages for DocImpact

Because the entire commit message is included in the logged bug, try to put as much information as you can into the commit message about which doc audience is affected by the change or enhancement, what the change is and why it matters. Answer the following questions when writing the commit message:

  • Who would use the feature?

  • Why use the feature?

  • What is the exact usage for the feature? If it’s an API change, give example requests and responses.

  • Does the feature also have permissions/policies attached? If so, what are the requirements?

If it is a configuration option change, our automation will pick it up. However, we do request for individually filed bugs outside of the automated generation.

If it is a CLI change, we also have automation that picks up the help text, but extra usage information is useful.

Third-Party DocImpact settings

By default, the DocImpact tag creates bugs using the repository name as project in Launchpad. To change this behavior, the docimpact-group option in projects.yaml can be used. For example, if you set project like this:

- project: stackforge/project-name
  description: Latest and greatest cloud stuff.
  upstream: git://
  docimpact-group: Project